Ok.. Using Spark Inspector was very easy.
At first there was one odd thing : Where is the SparkInspector.framework?
It’s located in Spark Inspector app. However, if using its “Framework Setup assistant”, the app ingest frameworks to be linked for a chosen project for you.
One thing I didn’t like was that.. as most Cocoa programmers tend to set up a Xcode project, it puts framework setting in “target” Build Settings rather than “Project” Build Settings.
If you want to set those links as default for all targets you end up adding, the easier way is to put that setting in “project” Build Settings. I know that many Mac/iOS app developers who usually jumped into Mac/iOS app dev. after iOS became popular don’t understand the different necessity between the “Target” and “Project” Build Settings.
Anyway, this is not a big deal.
Now, let’s talk about cool things.
As you can see from the above picture, your app runs on a simulator or an actual device while debugging, but the Spark Inspector app intercept that also and displays view hierarchy in list form on its left pane, visual representation of it in the middle pane, and finally, properties of chosen view/layers on the right-most pane. So, while you are debugging and interacting with a real device or a simulator, you can change colors, tints etc by choosing a layer/view on the Spark Inspector and changes some properties of them.
You don’t need to paint your layer/view in your code for debugging purpose anymore!
Isn’t that cool?
Also, the most important and useful feature of this app is the 3D display of those views and layers. When one view occludes an underlying view completely, and if there is some transition is applied to the underlying view ( unexpectedly ), you can still check what’s happening visually.
You can say that recursiveDescription is good enough. (It’s undocumented message of UIView )
However, when there are lots of view/layers, it can be very hard to identify which one is which when you use the message. However, this great helper tool for UI debugging eases debugging very easy.
After the PaintCode, I think this is a must-have tool for iOS developers!
I’ll buy it soon.
BTW, there is one little glitch there. As you can see, the right side of the right-most pane invades the right border of its super view. So, the content on the right-most pane goes beyond the right border.